Video: China Ivory Crackdown Welcomed

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CHINA has destroyed more than six tonnes of illegal ivory, in a move welcomed as an important signal the country backs action to stop elephant poaching.

China has destroyed six tonnes of illegal ivory in a move to stop elephant poaching. Source: AAP

The ivory, which is sought-after in China for making ornaments, was seized from the illegal trade and has been crushed into powder by the Chinese government.

Conservationists say China is the world’s largest consumer of trafficked ivory, most of which comes from elephants killed in Africa, and the move sends a signal of the government’s commitment to tackling the problem.

Destruction of the ivory, from more than 600 dead elephants, comes just weeks after eight Chinese citizens were convicted and sentenced to between three and 15 years imprisonment for smuggling some 3.2 tonnes of ivory.

“The destruction of seized ivory makes an important public statement that, in conjunction with other government-led efforts to reduce demand, has the potential to have a significant impact on the illegal market for ivory,” said Tom Milliken, from Wildlife trade monitoring network Traffic.

Image comment: China will destroy ivory stockpile on January 6, 2014 Image credits: The Telegraph

“China’s actions, more than those of any other country, have the potential to reverse the rising trends of elephant poaching and illegal ivory trafficking.”

China has a legal ivory market based on stocks that pre-date a global ban on ivory trade imposed in 1989, and on stocks which were part of a legal “one-off” sale from four African countries in 2008, but the seized ivory cannot be be used for commercial purposes under international rules.

Gabon, the Philippines and the United States have all recently destroyed stockpiles of ivory 

Video & News Link:-http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/world/china-ivory-crackdown-welcomed/story-fnjbnxol-1226796201437

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ALDF Urges Federal Government to End Research on Captive Chimpanzees: Video, Release of Chimps After Being Experimented On For 30 Years

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The United States and the small African nation of Gabon are the only two countries in the world that continue to use chimpanzees as test subjects in behavioural and biomedical research Such testing has brought little in the way of scientific breakthrough, but has, instead, inflicted a host of horrors on our closest genetic relatives. 

Tragically, many chimpanzees have served as research specimens for decades without relief, often confined to small cages with no access to other members of their species or the outdoorsconditions tantamount to physical, emotional, and psychological torture.  It is widely acknowledged that such terrible conditions irreparably harm these highly intelligent and social creatures.

Late in 2010, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) forecasted that a change in policy might be on the horizon.  After decades of scrutiny and pressure from animal rights groups, the general public and, increasingly, the international community, the NIH requisitioned a study from the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to examine the use of chimpanzees in NIH-funded behavioural and biomedical research. 

That report, issued one year later in December 2011, concluded that “most current biomedical use of chimpanzees is unnecessary” and suggested that future research on chimpanzees be limited and guided by the following three principles:

(1) the research must be necessary to advance public health;
(2) there is no other suitable research model available; and
(3) the chimpanzee research subjects be maintained in an ethological environment focused on meeting both their social and physical needs.

Following the IOM study, a Working Group was tasked with reviewing the IOM proposals and advising on their implementation.  The Working Group issued a report on January 22, 2013, which offered twenty-eight recommendations.  The NIH published this report as part of a “Request for Information through which it sought public comment on the recommendations.

ALDF, together with pro bono legal counsel from the law firm of Proskauer Rose, once again welcomed the chance to defend captive chimpanzees from the agonies of behavioural and biomedical research.

Although long overdue, the Working Group’s recommendations are an important step forward in the fight for chimpanzee rights.  Importantly, the report recommended that “[t]he majority of NIH-owned chimpanzees should be designated for retirement and transferred to the federal sanctuary system.” 

The report also proposed dramatic improvements in the housing of research chimpanzees—by requiring them to cohabit in social groups of at least seven individuals and improving the size and layout of their living space, as well as requiring access to the outdoors and veterinary care.  These changes to policy, if implemented, would help to alleviate the suffering of chimpanzees used in research.

But they do not go far enough.

To demonstrate that NIH policy is out-of-step with international standards and still lags behind the rest of the world in its treatment of chimpanzees, our comments included a survey of the laws of Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan, which, particularly in recent years, have banned or otherwise restricted chimpanzee-based research.

Our comments also urged the NIH to embrace public opinion, as polls have shown that a majority of Americans favour banning the practice of experimenting on chimpanzees.  Moreover, we exhorted the NIH to follow the lead of other federal government agencies taking steps to provide greater protections for captive chimpanzees.  In particular, we highlighted the recent petition to the Fish & Wildlife Service to classify captive chimpanzees, like their wild counterparts, as endangered species under the Endangered Species Act.

Accordingly, our comments insisted that the NIH go beyond the Working Group recommendations and implement a ban on all future chimpanzee testing in any NIH-funded researchWith such a ban, not only would there be no need to retain at government expense the proposed colony of fifty research-ready chimpanzees, but such resources could be better invested in developing non-animal research modelsIndeed, it is our long-term goal that the NIH will forego the recommendation to explore alternative animal research models (such as genetically altered mice), and instead adopt more humane, ethical, and reliable research protocols.

Given recent trends, the NIH should seize this seminal moment in history and stop the suffering of research chimpanzees once and for all.  As the Working Group report conceded, “in light of evidence suggesting that research involving chimpanzees has rarely accelerated new discoveries or the advancement of human health for infectious diseases,” it is not logical, ethical, or humane to squander precious government funds to exacerbate the plight of our fellow primates.

News Link:http://aldf.org/article.php?id=2384

“The following made me cry, we have no right to lock up the innocent & perform horrific experiments on them. Why don’t we put all the rapist’s, murderers & child abusers to good use, instead of giving them a warm place to sleep, food, recreation, etc. all that we pay for…experiment on them instead, then at least we would know the drugs being tested, might actually work on humans!!”

Release of chimpanzees, 30 years after undergoing experiments

Uploaded on 7 Sep 2011

Gabon’s Ivory Will Go Up in Smoke

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In a dramatic statement of principle, the Central African nation of Gabon will today burn its 4.8 tonne elephant ivory stockpile – a move which has been widely applauded by the international conservation community.

The Born Free Foundation believes this landmark gesture by Gabon sends a clear and unambiguous message to the criminal networks involved in international wildlife crime: that illegal trading in elephant ivory will no longer be tolerated.

“This is a momentous day for Gabon and speaks volumes about the seriousness of the elephant poaching situation today said Will Travers OBE, Chief Executive Officer of the Born Free Foundation.  “I hope that Gabon’s decisive action will alert consumers of ivory in China, decision-makers in Brussels and those who believe the ivory trade should be legalised, to the hard truth – that demand is wiping out Africa’s elephants”.

Wildlife trade analysts described 2011 as an annus horribilis for the African elephant and many experts now believe poaching stands at its highest level for 20 years.  Last week, a report submitted to CITES (the 175 nations that have ratified the International Convention on Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora), identified China as the primary destination for this illicit trade.

Ian Redmond OBE, Wildlife Consultant to the Born Free Foundation exclaimed: “Gabon’s ivory bonfire (a true bonfire of the vanities, given the uses to which ivory is put) sends a clear signal to the world – the ivory trade must end.  Why is this so important?   Because the elephant is not only an icon of African wildlife and culture.  They are also widely viewed as a super-keystone species or “mega-gardeners of the forest”.   Their role as seed dispersal agents and landscape gardeners is critical to the health of their forest, and their forests are in turn critical to global climate stability.”

Please read the rest:- http://www.bloodyivory.org/news/gabon-ivory-burn

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